DEL PASO HEIGHTS -- A 26-year-old mother from Del Paso Heights was found dead a few days after she was reported missing.
Police say Candice De Anda was reported missing under suspicious circumstances from her Branch Street home last Tuesday. Her body and car were found near her home.
Officials arrested a person of interest on unrelated charges but have not released the identity yet.
Neighbors say they were hoping De Anda would be found. They say the young mother of two was friendly and always smiling.
Now, they’re all trying to figure out why someone would take her life.
Neighbors say De Anda lived with her husband and two children.
“It’s horrible, she was such a beautiful girl,” said next-door neighbor, Marvin Marney. “Just spoke to her father yesterday and text him that I hope he was able to find his daughter, keep his head up but now we find out it’s too late.”
Sacramento police say De Anda’s body and car were both found close to her home Thursday night.
“A person of interest has been arrested on unrelated charges, but the investigation is ongoing,” said Vance Chandler with the Sacramento Police Department.
Pictures on De Anda’s facebook page paint a happy picture of her and her family.
Police did not release details about their whereabouts, only adding that the children are safe.
“We’re looking at all angles, anyone that could be suspicious of this crime,” said Chandler.
Marney says the family kept to themselves but says he felt suspicious after hearing a disturbance at his neighbor’s home – just days before De Anda went missing.
“One day I heard some crying, like someone was hurting, and looking back I could have helped,” Marney said.
While police are working to piece together what happened, neighbors are mourning the young mother’s death.
“Knowing that I could have helped, it’s something I’m going to have to live with now,” Marney expressed.
Police say they're still investigating this homicide.
Eddie Tillman, who may be the person of interest in the case, was listed on the inmate roster as of 9 p.m. Saturday. He faces a felony murder charge. When asked about Tillman’s arrest, police say they couldn’t comment on it.